Pavanamuktasana – Wind Relieving Pose, Right Method, Benefits

By Dr Raghuram Y.S. MD (Ay) & Dr Manasa, B.A.M.S

Pavanamuktasana – wind relieving pose or wind liberating pose is a reclined pose. It helps to release trapped gas from your intestine and hence the name. It is also called as Vatayanasana. This pose may be combined with Ardha Pavanamuktasana to tap more benefits. The combo is extremely effective.

This pose relieves your body and mind off its pressures and relaxes them to a great extent.

Doing it early in the morning before getting out of the bed will enhance the smoothness and efficiency of your bodily functions and keep you fit and healthy throughout the day.

The practitioner bends both legs and hugs them into the body with arms wrapped around the shins. He would tuck his chin towards the chest. He may also lift his head towards the knees.
Read – Yogasana – Spiritual, Physical And Mental Benefits, Classification

Preparation for Pavanamuktasana

  • The wind relieving pose shall be practiced on empty stomach at whatever time of the day it is practiced. It is preferably practiced early in the morning.
  • One should practice this pose 3-4 hours after taking the food in case it is practiced at any other time of the day other than morning.
  • One shall keep his or her bowel and bladder empty by the time one takes on to the pose.

Method of doing

Positioning for the pose

Lie down flat on your back. Your legs are extended, straight and kept together. Your arms are by your sides with palms down and touching the floor. Keep your head, neck and spine in a straight line.
Relax and breathe freely.

Getting into the pose

Step 1

  • Lifting your right leg, gradually bend your right knee and take it close to your torso. Your thigh touches your lower abdomen.
  • Interlock your hands on your knee and press it towards your chest.
  • Take 4-5 deep breaths here.
  • Exhale.
  • Pull your naval button down towards the spine so as to flatten your spine on the floor.
  • Slowly bring your upper back off the floor and bring your chin close to the right knee. You may also touch your chin to the knee. Be here for few deep breaths.
  • Exhale and come down.
  • Release your knee from the clasp of your hands.
  • Extend your right leg.

Step 2

  • Repeat the same steps by bringing up your left leg.
  • Lifting your left leg, gradually bend your left knee and take it close to your torso. Your thigh touches your lower abdomen.
  • Interlock your hands on your knee and press it towards your chest.
  • Take 4-5 deep breaths here.
  • Exhale.
  • Pull your naval button down towards the spine so as to flatten your spine on the floor.
  • Slowly bring your upper back off the floor and bring your chin close to the left knee. You may also touch your chin to the knee. Be here for few deep breaths.
  • Exhale and come down.
  • Release your knee from the clasp of your hands.
  • Extend your left leg.
    Read – Health Benefits Of Yoga: Mind And Body

Step 3

  • Now lift both your legs simultaneously and bring both your knees to close to your torso. Both your thighs touch your lower abdomen.
  • Interlock your hands on both your knees and press them towards your chest. If you want to experience a deep compression of your abdomen you can embrace your knees with your forearms such that your hands hold the opposite elbows while your forearms cross over on your knees while you press your knees deeper towards the chest.
  • Take 4-5 deep breaths here.
  • Exhale.
  • Pull your naval button down towards the spine so as to flatten your spine on the floor.
  • Slowly bring your upper back off the floor and bring your chin close to your knees. You may also keep your chin touching the junction of your inner knees. Be here for few deep breaths.

Release from the pose

  • Exhale and come down.
  • Release your knee from the clasp of your hands.
  • Extend your legs.
  • Relax and breathe normally.
  • Practice this pose for at least 3-4 times.

Note –

  • Inhale while bending the knee
  • Exhale while lifting your upper back
  • Inhale as you come back to the ground and stretch legs straight

Improvisation –In the final point of the pose, place your chin between your knees – Swing your body back and forth 5-10 times and left to right for 5-10 times. 
Read – How To Do Pranayama – A Simple Pranayama Technique

Alterations and modifications

Eka Pada Pavanamuktasana – doing the pose with only one leg
Dwi Pada Pavanamuktasana – doing the pose with both legs
Salamba Eka Pada Pavanamuktasana – supported one legged wind relieving pose

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sUJa5YiBUOc

Health Benefits

  • Strengthens back and abdominal muscles
  • Tones up the muscles of legs and arms
  • Tones and strengthens core muscles
  • Stimulates pelvic muscles and reproductive organs
  • Stretches your neck and back effectively
  • Eases tensions around low back area
  • Loosens spinal vertebrae and makes it flexible
  • Cures back pain
  • Helps to relieve wrist problems
  • Improves blood circulation in pelvic regions and also the internal organs
  • Improves circulation around the hip area
  • Burns excessive fat accumulated around butts, thighs, belly and pelvic regions, best pose for those seeking flat belly 
  • Good for all abdominal organs
  • Massages intestines and stimulates the internal organs of the digestive system and hence releases the trapped gases trapped in your intestines while improving your digestion process.
  • Good remedy for flatulence, constipation, indigestion, hyperacidity and diarrhea and many gastrointestinal problems
  • Beneficial for reproductive organs and provide good cure for menstrual disorders
  • Relieves impotence and sterility
  • Provides relief from arthritis, heart problems and waist pain
  • Eases mental lethargy
  • Helps to improve concentration and calms mind
    Read – Do You Concentrate On Improving Concentration? 14 Easy Techniques

Preparatory Poses

  • Sulabha Pavanamuktasana
  • Ardha Pavanamuktasana

Follow Up Poses

Pavanamuktasana with raised head

Time spent doing Pavanamuktasana

Perform this pose initially for just 10 seconds. As you master this pose you may extend the duration to about 60 seconds.

Impact on Chakras

The wind relieving pose activates flow of prana in the Manipura Chakra. Stimulates and activates the Manipura Chakra – Solar Plexus. This in turn activates self esteem, motivation and joy. This also generates will power and feelings of vitality. The balanced chakra makes the practitioner feel confident, motivated and decisive. Since this chakra controls metabolism and digestion, the pose also helps in the same direction.
Read – Chakra – Kundalini: Introduction, Meaning, Types, Location, Ayurveda View

Contraindications, Precautions

  • Piles
  • Hernia
  • Heart problems
  • High blood pressure
  • Spinal injury
  • Sciatica
  • Slip disc
  • Hyperacidity
  • Stomach ulcers
  • Disorders of testes
  • Back and neck problems
  • Those who have undergone recent abdominal surgery

Caution

  • Do not lift your neck off the floor. Lift your upper back instead.
  • Don’t allow your lower back to come off the floor and keep it in contact with the floor.
  • Do not overstrain your neck and rest of the body. This might lead to strains and injuries.
  • Pregnant woman may avoid this pose. It needs to be avoided even during menstruation

Impact on doshas and tissues

Impact on Doshas and its subtypes – Since this pose stimulates the digestive organs and improves digestion it is good for the balance of pachaka pitta and samana vata. Since it releases the gases from your intestines and is beneficial for reproductive organs, is a good cure for impotence, sterility and menstrual disorders, it is good in balancing apana vata functions. Since it is good for relieving arthritis and is good for joints, the pose is good for shleshaka kapha and vyana vata balance. As it calms the mind and improves concentration, it balances prana vata, sadhaka pitta and tarpaka kapha and also restores the balance of mind and the mind contaminating doshas i.e. raja and tama qualities.

Impact on tissues – Since the wind relieving pose strengthens and stretches your muscles, it is good for the health of muscles and channels of transportation of muscle tissue. It is also a beneficial pose for rasa tissue since it helps improve blood circulation. The pose being good for the joints and enables flexibility of muscles, joints and spine, it keeps the shleshaka kapha in balance and healthiest best. Since it also burns the fat and depletes excessive fat accumulated in the body it is good for balancing the fat in the body and also for the health of fat transporting channels in the body. Being good for the reproductive system and a good cure for impotence, sterility and menstrual disorders the pose is the best one for the health of semen / sperm and menstrual blood / ovum and the channels which transport them in the body.

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